Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Obama Spends 55 Dollars on Every Pakistani Refugee

From Chris Bowers over at OpenLeft:

The United States has pledged to give $55 per Pakistan refugee caused by the escalated fighting in the region:

With Pakistan facing its worst refugee crisis since partition from India 60 years ago, the US is providing $110 million in emergency assistance for as many as 2 million refugees who have fled fighting in the Swat Valley.

The United States often provides emergency aid in such circumstances, but the sizable assistance announced Tuesday by Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton has a particular objective: to ease the hardship of Pakistanis who have been routed from their homes by fighting that the Pakistani military has pursued, at US insistence, against the Taliban.

With the US embarking on a new policy toward Pakistan that aims to defeat the country's extremist elements by winning over the population, the last thing the US needs is to start out even further behind in the battle for hearts and minds. As Secretary Clinton hinted in announcing the aid, the Obama administration wants to encourage the Pakistani people's early signs of cooperation and common purpose against the Taliban.

It should be pretty frakking obvious that what we are going in Pakistan isn't going to make the region more stable, and certainly isn't going to win people over to the cause of the Pakistani and American governments. You don't cause two million people--greater than the population of Philadelphia--to lose their homes, but then think you have made everything better by giving them each $55 (less the cost of distributing the aid).

Before somebody jumps in with, "That's a lot in Pakistan!" -- no it isn't. I've spent more than a few summers over there, and that aid will do next to nothing.

It's a miserably small amount for a people who are losing nearly everything largely due to this enormous outgrowth of violence that has grown out of an Afghanistan the US chose to neglect for the past 8 years. Couple this neglect with a US military policy of drone bombings that have a 1-49 militant-to-civilian kill rate, and what we are creating here is a thousand more bin Ladens -- people who are witnessing catastrophe being wreaked on their people and seeing the stars and bars flying over the ruins.

Even if we don't care at all about the welfare of these people -- and we don't, Obama's smiling face hasn't changed that -- we should at least have the foresight about self preservation and blowback. But it seems that we don't have that either. We just have endless war.


JMP said...

How to fail as an Army: Part 653:

"Pakistan army fails to rescue civilian allies in Swat" McClatchy News

"ISLAMABAD, Pakistan — Short of food and desperate for the military to support them, around 200,000 people remain trapped in northern Swat as the Pakistani army battles further south to wrest the area back from Taliban extremists, residents said Thursday."

Sixty years of palying footsie with terrorists/'irregualr' forces. Forming them. Funding them, guiding them, arming them. And who could have guessed it would come to bite them in the butt? Time after time. Decade in & out. Dark henious terror raids & massacres by the dozens.

Yeah, we'll continue to fund this morass. Funding failure is what we do so well! Ask not for whom the taliban tolls, it tolls for thee. So when do you man up and fight for the last battle for Pakistan? Hmm? Just wondering. JMP

Zaid at UGA said...

Sixty years of palying footsie with terrorists/'irregualr' forces. Forming them. Funding them, guiding them, arming them. And who could have guessed it would come to bite them in the butt? "

Like the Central Intelligence Agency made Osama bin laden one of their finest assets so he had the knowhow to train a handful of hijackers to successfully take down both world trade centers and the Pentagon?

Those in glass houses...